need rec. in Bucktown or Logan Square
I'll be in town in thurs. nite and would love some recommendations. Here's the scoop:
my sister and cousin both live in Chi., they don't care where we go. I would prefer a sure thing thats smallish and not real noisy, with entrees $10-$20. An extensive beer/wine selection would be great. My original post wouldn't fit but it included Roscoe Village, Andersonville, Lincoln Square and Southport as well. I am not really interested in italian, indian or mexican.
Thanks for any help
Volo http://www.volorestaurant.com/menus.html (New American)
They have an excellent wine list, and the food is very very good. Also, they have a quaint outdoor patio in back. Located in Roscoe Village (Damen/Roscoe). I highly recommend it.
Bistro Campagne http://www.bistrocampagne.com/
On north Lincoln in Lincoln Square serves up great French food and has a good beer selection including all the different flavors of Chimay.
I would check these out:
Lula Cafe (Logan Square) - very local, quaint, and an interesting menu
Meritage Cafe and Wine bar (Bucktown) - great food, great wine - just might be above that $20 range
Erwin (Lakeview - 2900 blk. N. Halsted) - not in your specified neighborhood, but close!
Most of the non-vegetarian entrees at Lula, Meritage, and Erwin are in the low to mid twenties, above the range specified by the OP. Good places, though, if you are willing to spend a bit more.
I ate at Cafe Matou (Bucktown, www.cafematou.com ) a few months ago, and the entrees were in the high teens. It was okay, not great.
Lula, Meritage or Erwin.. I don't know if they would have the beer or wine selection the OP is asking for
As for the "okay" comment on Cafe Matou.. I am truly spellbound. And I totally disagree. Far above just okay for me. In fact, I was just there on Sunday evening, entertaining a work colleague from LA. She absolutely loved it!
The reason I thought Cafe Matou was just "okay" was that the food was exactly that - just okay. None of the dishes had that "delicious, to die for" taste. For example, my main was short ribs and they were not at all tender or flavorful the way most places serve them. Most of the other dishes were similarly uninspiring. I was expecting my dinner to be much better than it was. It was VERY disappointing.
Cafe Matou *does* have quite an assortment of wines, though. So, too, does Meritage; in fact, Meritage (like Cafe Matou) is an award-winner from Wine Spectator, and has long been known for its wine selection (which is why they added "wine bar" to their name).
I have to disagree.
We started with an orange and yellow tomato salad and the stuffed mushroom. Both were excellent. I had the almost crusted chicken breast under a bed of butternut squash and my colleage had a beef dish with potatoes. We were both so into our dishes that we gobbled it up before we could get a bite of each others! For desert we had the lemon cake with rhubarb and their take on an apple crisp which were both excellent as well.
As a bonus, after tax and tip, our bill was $60/per person. Can't beat that!
You say smallish, not too noisy, entrees $10-20, in Bucktown and the first thing that comes to mind is Jane's. It's not Italian, Indian or Mexican either. The only downside to Janes can be your close proximity to other diners, but with a group of 3 or more, I don't think it would be a problem.
Let us know where you end up!
I also agree on Cafe Matou. They don't have a large menu, but what they do have they do WELL. I've been here several times, and once even for their 5-course meal with wine pairings. They know how to cook great food and they are knowledgeable about it too. I had the chicken dish as well with butternut squash puree and my husband had the veal. We both loved our dishes. I had the leek and kohlrabi soup as an appetizer and loved that as well. We'll definitely be back, maybe for the next wine dinner in October!
Although not exactly the hippest, I really like the west town tavern-- well prepaired new american comfort food-www.westtowntavern.com- It is firmly in that price point, nice wine list--friendly servers-- you will have a good time. For my money, much better than meritage
Good luck-- let us know where you go, and how it turns out-